Can 75% of PAMF GARAGE Vehicle Emissions Vent Through the Ramps?


Why wasn’t the Illingworth & Rodkin, Inc Vehicle Exhaust Emissions Air Quality Report for the Palo Alto Medical Foundation PAMF Sunnyvale Underground Parking Structure, designed by Hawley Peterson Synder Architects, provided in the PAMF DEIR/FEIR for disclosure and review?

LATE for the party and PRESENTED for the first time ON THE EVE of the COUNCIL VOTE, the Air Quality report estimates 75% of the expelled carbon monoxide emissions to vent independently through these narrow ramps leading to the underground parking structure for PAMF to be located at 301 Old San Francisco Road.
PAMF Sunnyvale Ramp Illustration Leading to Underground Parking Structure

PAMF Sunnyvale Ramp Illustration Leading to Underground Parking Structure

(Click image to enlarge)     

Are the calculations reasonable? I am skeptical that the narrow PAMF ramps leading below grade can spontaneously vent 75% of the toxic vehicle emissions per the report delivered at the 11th hour during the Council Meeting.

The 150,000 square foot underground parking garage has 399 parking spaces. Each vehicle is estimated to circulate for 10 minutes per visit (5 minutes entering and 5 minutes exiting). THAT’S a heaping load of traffic exhaust!

NOTE: For an illustration of the PAMF 14’x14′ wide chimney type, 94dBA  parking garage exhaust fans, click on posting “PAMF Chimney Type Parking Garage Vents Dispel Hazardous Air Pollutants Adjacent to Residential Homes “

The Illingworth & Rodkin, Inc report for the Palo Alto Medical Foundation PAMF Project assumes that only 25% of the vehicle emissions will need to be vented through the PAMF 94dBA loud garage exhaust vents designed by Hawley Peterson Synder Architects, above ground, near the residential homes. That leaves 75% of the carbon monoxide to expel independently through the vents.

The report states “Assuming the model that ONLY 25% of the trapped emissions would need to be expelled through the vents, the results of the carbon monoxide concentrations would be 8.9 parts per million (ppm) for 1-hour exposures and 4.7 ppm for 8-hour exposures.

The State ambient air quality standards are 20 ppm for 1-hour exposures and 9.0 for 8-hour exposures.”

What would happen if, actually, if the numbers were reversed and the expelled carbon monoxide is 25% through the Parking Garage Ramps and 75%  at the residential border?

Do the MATH and share your comments!

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4 responses to “Can 75% of PAMF GARAGE Vehicle Emissions Vent Through the Ramps?

  1. Thank for you blog, Jeni. These issues need to surface, just as the fumes in the garage will rise through the vents. I still hold the opinion that PAMF is too large for our neighborhood. It will be concentrated on one specialty and will not be a clinic serving the overall needs of the neighborhood. Furthermore, why do they act as if everyone has Blue Cross insurance. I have Kaiser. The traffic burden with all of the development is too much for Heritage to absorb. Why is TAAFE and Francis closed to through traffic? Who is so special living on thoses streets.

  2. jeni….this is soooo revealing….amazing how the citizens of Sunnyvale can be played by the very people they pay. this is hard work. thanks:)

    • Hi Tynna, Thanks for commenting. There was one conscious voice on the Council, David Whittum, who advocated strongly for the Heritage Neighborhood. Whittum asked pertinent questions that if they had been solved, would have benefited both parties. If we had more civil leaders as knowledgeable like and like-minded as him, we’d have a perfect city!

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